Breastfeeding, the key to good health of mothers and babies, also has benefits for families, employers, and the community in general. For these reasons, the Connecticut Department of Public Health, the Connecticut WIC Program and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend feeding your baby only breast milk until age 6 months, and breast milk plus solid food from 6-12 months and beyond.
We are here to support you-During your pregnancy and after your baby is born!
Breastfeeding cannot be matched by any other form of feeding. The benefits of breastfeeding begin in those special moments after birth and last for many years. Breastfeeding is good for you, too. Breastfeeding may help you lose the pregnancy weight after your child is born. Breastfeeding may also reduce your risk of getting breast and ovarian cancer later in life. At WIC we have many ways to support your decision to breastfeed your baby.
We'll help you make a plan.
Planning ahead can make it easier. While you are pregnant, WIC nutrition staff can answer questions you may have about breastfeeding so you have the information you need to feel confident and comfortable with breastfeeding. We can also work with you to plan for your hospital stay. Studies show that having your baby close to you after giving birth called skin-to-skin contact can help with breastfeeding. Talk to your doctor about your plans to breastfeed your baby as soon as possible after birth.
Once your baby is here, we want to hear from you.
WIC also has trained staff to work with moms when they return from the hospital. But, if we don't hear from you, we can't help you. If you have questions or concerns about how breastfeeding is going, call your local WIC program. We want to help make breastfeeding successful, and often times we find all moms need is a little bit of encouragement. When additional help is needed, we can connect you with your health care provider for other options.
Working and Breastfeeding
The WIC program provides breast pumps to mothers who need to be separated from their babies during the day. If you are going back to work or school, let your WIC nutritionist know so that, together, you can make a plan to make your return to work easier. This includes sample letters to an employer or if you qualify, providing a breast pump through WIC or through your insurance. In Connecticut, we have laws to protect a mother's right to pump or feed her baby while at work.
WIC Peer Counseling Program
How you will feed your baby is one of the most important choices you will make as a parent. Today, more and more mothers are choosing to breastfeed. Some women look forward to the chance to breastfeed. Others may be unsure how breastfeeding will fit into their life. Still, others may worry how to start and how to know if they are doing it right.
All of these questions and feelings are normal.
Breast milk is not only good for your baby, but breastfeeding can be a great part of being a mom!
At WIC we know it helps if new moms to talk with other moms who have had the same worries and questions about feeding their babies. At WIC we have specially trained moms, who breastfed their babies, are on WIC or were on WIC and that help new moms with breastfeeding. We call them breastfeeding peer counselors.
We have peer counselors in three of our local agency locations including Bridgeport Optimus WIC Program, Fair Haven Community Health Center and the T.V.C.C.A. WIC Program.
If interested, you can be connected with a peer counselor who:
- talks to you during your pregnancy about breastfeeding
- helps you get off to a good start with breastfeeding
- shares tips on how to breastfeed comfortably
- knows tips for making lots of breast milk
- shares ideas on how to keep breastfeeding even after you return to work or school
- can see you at your WIC visit to answer your breastfeeding questions